Fabrics produced in Brazil are covering furniture at homes in Saudi Arabia. A company from the interior of the state of São Paulo, Fiama, started exporting fabrics for decoration to the Arab country last year. The importer is a company called Habitat, which operates in furniture retail.
According to the person responsible for marketing at Fiama, Pablo Contatore Pallares Abeleira, fabrics that are resistant to the sun and water are sold, for use on external furniture. As sales only began last year, the Saudi market still represents a small share of company exports: 2%.
The products shipped by Fiama to the Arabs are sophisticated, according to Abeleira. “They order both neutral and bright colors, and lots of red and golden fabrics,” he said.
The contact with the customer from Saudi Arabia took place at fair Heim Textile, in Germany. The company now also plans to export to the remaining Arab countries.
For this they are making contact with local chambers of commerce and seeking potential representatives, mainly in Dubai, in the United Arab Emirates.
Fiama has offices in Campinas, in the interior of the state of São Paulo, and has revenues of US$ 1.5 million per month, 15% coming from exports.
Production is 180,000 meters per month. The company, established in 1961, started exporting in 1990, to the countries in the Mercosur (the customs union that includes Brazil, Argentina, Uruguay and Paraguay).
In 1995 the company also started selling to the United States and currently has representatives in Asia and Oceania, the United States, Mexico, the Caribbean and Central America, South America, Europe, South Africa and Japan.
The main clients on the foreign market are the Caribbean, Argentina and the United States.
One of the Fiama targets, according to Abeleira, is to send between 30% and 35% of total production to the foreign market this year. The company is taking a series of steps for this, searching for new international fairs and representatives, increasing contacts with clients, apart from planning a greater number of foreign trips and preparing advertising material in various languages.
Fiama is a family company and is currently being administered by the third generation of Omati’s. The company started as a print shop and soon started producing fabric. They currently supply to the hotel and furniture sectors, as well as decoration professionals.
The fabrics may be used in upholstering, making curtains, blankets, as well as furniture for verandas, gardens and swimming pools. The line of products includes 150 kinds of cotton, linen, acrylic, chenille and changeant.
One of the lines sold by the company is the Sunshine line. This line has pictures of the Brazilian coast, among them palm trees, leaves and fish. It is made in acrylic fiber, mainly for use in outside areas, like gardens, and awnings.
There is also the Aquatec line, with cotton and polyester fabric, specific for external use, in applications like pool side, beach, garden and kiosk furniture, and the Linen line, with more sophisticated fabrics for internal furniture, like sofas.